Coach Joey Jones Show Recap 2011-09-06

September 7, 2011 · By · Filed Under Football, Joey Jones Radio Show 

Coach Jones and Lee Shirvanian was accompanied by defensive coordinator Bill Clark for the Joey Jones Radio show from Baumhower’s restaurant on Airport Boulevard.

Lee asked about perspective about the UWA game. He asked if he thought that the Jags played a good game. Coach Jones started off by saying “I don’t know,” he then continued by saying that he thought the players played hard, that they got after it physically, they were there emotionally and were ready to play. But he said that they did make some mistakes and did not play what he considers ‘South Alabama Football’. He mentioned the four turnovers in the first half and the play on special teams.

He also mentioned the field position because the offense didn’t play well and the mental mistakes and the special teams play had them, on average, starting at their own 19 yard line. He did not know where the defense averaged their starting position but he thought it would be near midfield.

He then said that if your field position is that bad you are not going to play well. But, bottom line, those things are fixable and they have to turn them around quickly. If they want to be a good football team, they have to fix them quickly.

Lee then mentioned to Coach Clark that they have less to work on than Auburn’s defense. Coach Clark was quick to deflect that by telling Lee that, to them, it’s all about the next game. As they were looking back on the game, they liked the effort but they also have things they want to work on and get better at. Coach Clark also mentioned that it he likes that they have film of their opponent for the next game. For UWA all they had was what film they had from the previous year.

Lee then went about talking how Steve Spurrier benched Steven Garcia then he came off the bench to lead the team to a come-back win. He then transitioned that into talking about Kendall Houston and Demetre Baker being suspended for the first half of the game against UWA and asked if they have been in the game, would it have been different?

Coach Jones said yes it would have been different, however you don’t know for sure that it was. Jones also said that when you walk out onto the field without two guys like them and Corey Besteda, who is another big play guy at receiver, it leaves a bit of a void that the team has to overcome.

The Jags did score on their opening drive of the game, but Coach Jones said they threw the ball alot in that drive. But then the turnovers took over. He rounded out the answer by saying in the future they want those guys out on the field and that they do not want that to happen again.

Lee introduced the ‘Who’s hot’ feature sponsored by Fuego Mexican Restaurant. On offense, Jones recognized Kendall Houston for his job coming in and playing a good game and breaking lots of tackles. Defensively he recognized Enrique Williams for his performance. Williams had 11 tackles after coming back from a shoulder injury in preseason camp.

Lee and Coach Clark began talking about the defense and the secondary. Lee asked about how B.J. Scott, Damond Smith and Charles Harris in the secondary changes the defense. Coach Clark agreed with Lee’s comment that they are good cover guys so they can leave them in coverage and get a good pass rush on the quarterback.

Jones agreed with what Lee Shirvanian said about what a good job the defense did to prevent Worsham from making any big plays. While he did lead their team with five receptions for 44 yards, his longest was 13 yards.

Lee mentioned that in previous airings of this show, Coach Jones had said that special teams had improved. So he asked Coach Jones if he had a better game at that phase of the game. Coach Jones said no, but he did say that there were some positive things and negative things. But they know what they need to work on and they will get to work to correct them.

The first email question that Lee asked was if there have been any difficulty keeping the players and staff focused with NC State and Kent State games approaching. Coach Jones said he has not thought about those games and cautioned that his players better not be thinking about those games either. He cautioned that Lamar has had this game circled since last year and want to come to Mobile and win. So his players better not be caught looking ahead because Lamar could jump up and bite them.

Coach Clark answered from the prospective of the staff that it has not been hard to stay focused on Lamar and not look ahead to the two games ahead.

The next question emailed to Lee asked if that was indeed the wishbone formation that he saw near the goal line against UWA. Jones confirmed that it was the wishbone and went on to say that they use it when they get near the end zone.

Lee stepped back after a short talk about the wishbone and the single wing offense to talk about high school football. When he moved to South Alabama in the 80’s, he said that the offenses were ‘the quarterback hands off to the running back’ type of offenses. Now you see shotgun formations, trips left and trips right. The offenses have really opened up.

Coach Clark then chimed in talking about how the high school offenses have evolved. The rise of the throwing quarterback then the advent of the running quarterback. Then you put those together. Coach Clark also mentioned that Coach Jones was one of the first to use the spread and throw the ball around alot in the high school ranks in Alabama.

The next sponsored segment was the Orthopedic Group injury update. Coach Jones said that the team came out of the game looking great on the injury front. Looking back to what they were like during the summer, they are looking really good. He said it was about two pages of injuries, down to one page, down to half a page and now it’s only about three players with injuries. He announced that Greg Hollinger will be back for the Lamar game, which is a tall receiver that has shown some good play in practice.

Coach Jones said he came in last year and tore his quad muscle then this year he hurt his shoulder at the beginning of the summer. Greg is about 6’3″ and weighs about 215-lbs. Jones said that last year he was a terror against the first team defense, which Coach Clark agreed with. They are now ready to get him on the field.

Lee asked about Melvin Meggs, who he saw leave the game. Coach Jones said he had cramps and that was all with him. He also mentioned B.J. Scott having cramps late in the game as well. Other than those, he said that they don’t have any injuries.

Lee asked about Enrique Williams and his injury last year going into this year. Coach Clark said that it wasn’t a worry that he was missing practice time. He continued by saying that he has been in the system for a while so they were comfortable with his play, but he was still out there with Coach Crain and the linebackers so he would know what was going on without physically participating.

Lee asked coach Clark as to who is their field guy who makes sure they are lined up correctly and takes control on the field. Coach Clark said that they depend on the Mike Linebacker who is either Jake Johnson or Bryson James and they also depend on their safeties Scott and Charles Harris.

Lee circled back to Hollinger and asked how much playing time he would see. Coach Jones said that they rotate in receivers quite a bit and feel they are interchangeable. They are two deep so he would expect Hollinger to see action for about half the game because they feel he is that good of a receiver.

Lee made light that Lamar will be the first team that we will have faced twice. He also said that the defense played very well, shutting out Lamar at home. Coach Jones agreed, he said that it was the start of a three game series with road games against Lamar and UC-Davis before returning to Mobile to face Georgia State. They really considered it the first road game too, the Dothan game wasn’t the full road game experience to them.

The WNSP staple caller Scooter called in and asked a few questions and made a couple comments. One of his questions was to Coach Jones about his preference of field, was it grass or artificial. Coach Jones said he was a traditionalist and preferred grass, but that field turf has come a very long way and makes such financial sense now for many places. Scooter followed it up with a question about burns and scuffs on the artificial turf. Jones said that they do still get burns and scuffs, but it’s not like what it used to be on the old turf.

Lee asked about the field turf and drainage since it rained heavily on Thursday. Coach Jones said that it drains very well, within 30 minutes or so it was drained and in great condition. It’s one of the major advantages of the artificial fields.

Another caller asked that, if South Alabama defeats NC State, would he name every player on the team as captain for the rest of the season like Coach Belichick. Coach Jones said that was a great idea and he might do that if they win, but he quickly turned the conversation back to Lamar.

Lee turned the conversation from TV, that one caller was calling about, to uniforms as being a big issue after the first week of play. Coach Jones let out a very audible “Oh god” when uniforms were mentioned. Lee asked if USA would ever go to something like the Georgia uniforms. Jones was quick to say “no.” However, he did mention that his wife liked the Georgia uniforms. But Coach Jones said that the Georgia uniforms were nowhere near as bad as the uniforms that Maryland wore for their game.

Coach Jones said that he has liked some of the Nike ProCombat uniforms that they have designed in the last few years, but that the Maryland uniforms were horrible. Coach Clark agreed and said that they took away from the game itself. They like to do things that the kids like, but Maryland’s were just too over the top.

Lee mentioned Tim Brando and what he said on his show about the uniforms. Brando said part of the allure of college football is the tradition of college colors so he was against it. Coach Clark said that they (South Alabama) likes to mix it up, but as long as you stay within your colors.

Another caller asked for Coach Clark to comment on Ken Barefield’s play on Saturday. Clark acknowledged that it was a very good comment. He said that Ken is a very good player and since his move to linebacker from safety, it gives them a fifth defensive back in the game in a way. They felt that they have found him a better place to play because of his agressiveness during the game. He can be their Sam or nickle linebacker. He is very mobile, as fans saw during the game when he leapt over the offensive player attempting to block him. Plus he added an interception in the red zone.

Lee asked both Coach Jones and Coach Clark as to what Lamar brings when they come to Mobile on Saturday. Coach Clark said that they had two of their starting receivers out and their starting tight end out on offense, but from last year to this year they added three transfers to their offensive line. The guard they added was the #2 guard in America two years ago and signed with USC but didn’t get in there. The right tackle came from Arkansas, is a big guy at about 6’7″ or 6’7″ and 300+ pounds who transferred to them. Their quarterback threw for over 400 yards before playing us last year. But they brought in a transfer at quarterback that signed with West Virginia and was the #5 running quarterback in the state of Texas, while also returning their quarterback from last year. He also said that they just have good players across the entire team.

Lee asked if the Jags would see much of a change in their defense from last year. Coach Jones said that they have changed personel some, but the biggest change has been the interior of their defense. They have changed from a 4-2-5 to a 4-3 defense. Last year they had lost two linemen to injury. They will have some big guys inside and he said that probably their two best players are the two guys on the inside.

Lee said that Kendall had a break-out game against Lamar by rushing for over 160 yards against them. He asked if the Jags could do that again. Coach Jones said he hopes so, but that the offense has to be balanced and they have to be mindful of the plays that they call.

Lee said he was a little hesitant to ask, but he asked both coaches what they thought of the Kent State game. Coach Jones said that the Kent State defense scared him a little because they were getting through Alabama’s offensive line at will early in the game. They did a good job of stopping the run early. But he wasn’t really watching them all that closely, they were watching the game as a game and preparing for Lamar. They will get to Kent State when it’s time.


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